Way out West! Ollie takes hat-trick before rifling Otters to big win at Alphington
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Ottery St Mary’s Australian, Ollie West, turned in a terrific all-round performance as relegation-haunted hosts, Alphington, were ruthlessly swept aside in a painfully one-sided encounter, writes Ian Townsend.
After the diminutive all-rounder claimed six wickets, including a hat-trick, in taking full advantage of a wicket offering considerable spin, he then teamed up with fellow opener Alex Clements to butcher the home attack and propel the Otters to a crushing 10-wicket win.
Tom Baxter was an early casualty for Alphington as he was cleaned up for a duck by visiting skipper, Will Harrison after which Nick Halse and Tom Nightingale batted solidly to post the only stand of any substance for the home side.
Forty four runs were added in 12 overs before Nightingale (15) was bowled by Harsha Liyanage.
Halse (25) soon followed, pouched by Rob Johns off teenager, Matt Jeacock, but Jack Mills (12) offered brief resistance before he became off-spinner West's first scalp, caught in the covers by Jody Clements.
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The Alphas had slipped to 92-4 but much worse was to follow as, with the score on 115, West claimed the first hat-trick of his career and the second by an Ottery bowler this season. First Ian MacDonald's patient knock was ended at 31 (six fours) as he top-edged to Alex Clements on the deep mid-wicket boundary, then Al Davey (0) gave Jody Clements a second catch in the covers and finally home skipper Will Pring (0) was pinned lbw. The home tail failed to wag as West removed both Ryan Amesbury (2) and John Heaver (2) via return catches and Jody Clements bowled Andy Mills (1) as the Alphas limped to 126 all out. With West returning 6-24 from 7.5 overs, the only blot on the visitors' copybook was the concession of 27 wides.
In reply the Otters' prolific opening pair of West and Alex Clements was barely troubled by a weak home bowling attack.
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West set the tone by despatching Heaver's opening over for ten and the 50 was posted in just the ninth over.
After a slow start, Alex Clements also cashed in despatching the expensive Nightingale (0-28 from four overs) for a series of boundaries.
Jack Mills was blasted for 20 in just two overs as the 100 was passed in the 18th over and, when Clements thumped Davey for successive fours, the visitors had cruised to the simplest of victories with a massive 25 overs to spare.
West remained unbeaten on 58 from 54 balls (11 fours) with Clements on 59 from 61 balls (ten fours and a six) and the result more or less guarantees Ottery's spot in C Division for the 2020 season.
However, a far tougher test awaits Harrison's men as promotion-chasing local rivals Sidmouth 2nd XI this weekend visit Salston Field!
Alphington 126 (I MacDonald 31, N Halse 25, extras 37; O West 6-24), Ottery St Mary 127-0 (A Clements 59*, O West 58*). Ottery St Mary (20pts) bt Alphington (3pts) by 10 wkts.
Otters Man of the Match - Ollie West